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Gaza electricity to return to 8-hour schedule

May 15, 2016 2:17 P.M. (Updated: May 15, 2016 5:55 P.M.)
GAZA (Ma'an) -- Gaza's electricity company announced it would return to an electricity rationing schedule of eight-hour intervals followed by eight hours without power for all districts in the Gaza Strip.

Spokesperson for the company Tariq Labid told Ma'an that they were informed by the Palestinian Energy Authority that a second power generator was now operational, which would allow a gradual return to the usual eight-hour schedule.

He added that only one of the two Egyptian power lines was currently operational, while the other remained disconnected.

The line was disabled ten days ago, and the Gaza Strip has been on a electricity rationing schedule of six-hour intervals followed by 12 hours without power ever since, deepening an already severe electricity crisis.

The Egyptian lines that provide electricity to the southern Gaza Strip contribute 20 megawatts.

Even at full capacity, Egyptian and Israeli electricity grids, together with Gaza's sole power plant, fail to cover the Gaza Strip’s energy needs. The power plant has not run at full capacity in years, with Israel's crippling blockade severely limiting fuel imports into the coastal enclave.

Gaza's electricity crisis made headlines last week when three small children died in a house fire caused by candles that the family used during a power cut.

The Gaza Strip was left almost entirely without power during a number of days last month due to maintenance work on power lines from both Israel and Egypt as well as the ongoing tax disputes on fuel for the enclave’s near-defunct power station.

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